Education design has evolved greatly in the past few years.
Experiences and research show that windowless, concrete rooms are not part of the equation any more. Most professionals and experts place technology at the centre of the sector’s creative boom. Schools today need classrooms incorporating three key elements: light, space and technology. All together they offer a modern and efficient class space to learn, play and evolve.
Technology advancements are indeed tremendous in the education field and interactive whiteboards, tablets and computers are as essential to the learning process today as black board were in yesterday’s classroom. The role of technology in education design is essential because the new generation of students is connected to technology all the time, which allows them quick and easy access to content and resources. The Those digital natives need however to be trained to efficiently and wisely access a flow of information, while the possibilities offer by new devices force designers to adapt the setup of the typical classroom.
First, classroom furniture must be adaptable to accommodate evolving technology and different teaching styles while keeping the students comfortable. Furniture needs to accommodate areas where students can work collaboratively or on their own. Second, education design usually focuses on the interior schemes mostly centre on floors, walls, lighting and furnishing. Classroom settings try to allow for natural daylight, a reliable stimulant for students (to keep them alert, energized and active). Another advantage is that it not only creates a bright space without the harshness of fluorescent lighting, but has also been proven to positively impact students’ creativity. It could be for instance with th use of high level windows and skylights in atriums.
Education design is now all about versatile spaces with furniture that can adapt to individual and group tasks, and big, connected and bright spaces that constantly need to change with a focus on mobility and functionality. In addition to providing multi-purpose and function furniture, designers who embark on educational projects should have a basis in student psychology so as to create the most beneficial space for its users. For instance, psychology of color provides designers the ability to encourage quiet, lively, fun or reflective spaces. It also allows spaces to relate to different age groups. Material choice is equally as important. With constant wear and tear, and varying age groups, material choices for furnishings and surface coverings need to be based on durability, functionality as well as aesthetics (acoustics are a huge issue for schools for instance).
The future of learning will be more group oriented. Such group participation better prepares students for working life in communities. From the very beginning, learners get experience working in teams. Furthermore, with advents in new technology, there will be more and more use of digital and interactive ways of learning.